tv [untitled] November 26, 2011 11:00am-11:30am PST
i didn't make it. then we had the second world war and people from the u.s. came and they freed us from the enemy, but you also brought cars with you. so in the 1950's, the bicycle use dropped dramatically and the danger increased a lot. and was not only you with your cars but also civilization. that's what we did ourselves. then the bicycle was considered old-fashioned and our transport policy was based on bike use -- car use, excuse me. we had a left wing politicians saying i want every worker to own his own car because the car is the motor of our economy. that went on until the 1970's,
as you can see, but in 1975 we had a dramental year. we had a lot of fatalities in traffic. we had the oil crisis and people got away from the environment. the air was very polluted. the main industrial area of the netherlands, we always had warnings orange, which means close all the window, stop breathing. because it's very polluted. for many of us, i can say us because i was there at the time, by the time. it was time for a change. people like tony boss, they started to organize the cyclists union and to establish the cyclist union, we called the national safety plan, road safety plan. and we started to introduce --
gradually, bike use went up and the danger and the fatalities decreased but not enough, so after a while we introduced the bicycle master plan, the ministry of transport introduced the national bicycle master plan to make all the local politicians and local engineers aware of the need for better infrastructure and more attention to the bicycle. that helped for a while but after 10 years, the bicycle plan was -- master plan was completed and the attention for the bicycle in-- decreased again so time for a new approach and then they introduced the bicycle council. it was a group of people, experts from all sorts of organizations, both governmental and nongovernmental, and they put together the forces to
implement more information, more things to do, improve bicycle facilities and bicycle policies and the bicycle council is not working for 10 years. we celebrate our 10-year anniversary next month. and what will come up next, we don't know but we're still not at the bike use level of the 1950's, so also we can improve. and in the netherlands, i also have to explain the benefits of cycling. sustainability, accessibility, health, livability and economics. and what do i tell about it? well, for sustainability, cycling is emission-free, uses hardly any oil, only to produce the bike and to have your chain go well. it reduces the global footprint
for the person. we all have our global foot print, what we use from this earth, and the footprint of the country and it alleviates global warming. what can be more sustaining except for walk something accessabilities? as mentioned before, we mentioned all the dutch people that are now on the bicycle in the car and who have a city that doesn't move anymore. it's congested for 24 hours. but there's more. the infrom structure use is more -- infrastructure use is more efficient. parking space is not so expensive when you park a car. you can park where you park a bike and you can park eight bicycles in the space of one car. when it comes to health, in-- it increases the life
expectancy. you can live longer, three years longer when you cycle every day to work, to school, to shops when you use the bicycle more often and that longer life is spent in better health. it makes you live in better health for more than 10 years. and it also reduces the diseases like obeesty and the heart diseases, the most obvious ones and what struck me is alzheimer's disease that comes later or doesn't come when you cycle a lot. it keeps your brain fresh and going, i guess. and what also is very important that work absenteism is reduced for people that use the ke more often. as it comes to lifestyle, of course we also have lifestyle. cycling in the netherlands is
not so much a lifestyle as it is here in the u.s. but cycling offers more joy and happiness, less traffic noise, cleaner air and better social integration. yesterday during the bike ride i noticed that the americans, the san franciscans who cycled with us, they met a lot of fans. they were constantly waving and saying hi, hello, and how are you? and in a car, well, with the speed you're going, it's difficult to recognize who you're approaching and to say hi, the car is on the next block. on the bicycle you can see each other, wave, call each other in the evening saying well, what were you doing at the wiggle? economic benefits -- well, all these benefits i mentioned are also to be translated into economical benefits. as was mentioned, for the
shopkeepers, the psychists are very good. at -- cyclists are very good. at first they don't didn't know because they see the huge trolleys with lots of growsies getting into the supermarkets with lots of cars. with you -- but surveys showed that car customers just come once a beak and bicyclists come every day and every day they spend $20. if they come six days that's $120. and the family trolley, that huge car is worth $80. so cyclists are good for shopkeepers and we are getting in a system of awareness now that shopkeepers do welcome bikers more than -- better than car users. so what makes the dutch people cycle? it's the flexibility of the system, the convenience. it's right in front door and
you can cycle to the front door of your destination. it is perceived safe. we all feel safe in the streets. as you saw we feel joy with no fear. it's cheap if for us dutch that's very porn. we got health benefits. we feel more healthy. it's the fastest way around in town and it's easy to combine with other modes of transport. as i explained i've gotten a old bike for my commuting trips and most of the people also have a bike on the other end of the trip to go to the office. well, who's on a bicycle? what is a cyclist? what does he need? to make good infrastructure you have to keep in mind that a cyclist is a vehicle with muscle power so you have to move yourself. it is a balanced vehicle, so you have to get on with people at a certain speed to cycle safely.
cyclists have helmets on so in case of an accident it's just the person that gets hit and no crumple zones of air bags, etc. our bikes have hardly if any suspension. but if you go on a bumpy road you still feel it in all your arms, legs and in your whole body. it's open air so in wind and rainy conditions, as you can have in the netherlands and as they say you have here but i haven't experienced, you have to keep in mind that people need shelter or protection against wind. it's a social activity so people meet each other, can talk to each other, can negotiate priorities and after all, they're humans. so what do we do with this information? we have a cycle speed. a designed speed of our infrastructure of 20 miles to 25 -- 12 miles to 25 miles per
hour. but we also have to keep to the official speed limits, so the very fast going like the one in the bright colored banana bike has to slow down in residential areas, home zones and other zones. but the insfra structure or the facilities needs to be for that -- need to be comfortable for the elderlyle lady as well. so -- ederly lady as well. so this is what it's all about. good infrastructure you get more cyclists and this picture is what we mean by a royal cycle road. so here the biker is a king. our traffic system, this is very detailed university
transportation technology. always start with a function of the road. if you want to change infrastructure, just keep in mind what is the function of the road, what do i want to do with it? so the function is determined here in the city hall or somewhere else, it is determined by policymakers. if the function is described well then the design will follow. technicians, the engineers can design a street according to the >> i want a comfortable high- speed connection, low resistance, and they need a motorway. the use will be correct, and if something goes wrong in this circle, you have to start again. are there other people wanting to move, is the design correct?n
five the safety principles. the recognized ability and state awareness. these five together are the basis of our infrastructure. and a road classification is very important. in the netherlands, we had a huge discretion in the late 90's and early thousands. we have the motorway system, and other important connections. we have distributors and access roads. he access roads are the residential areas. and distributors does impact of the rural areas and urban areas
to the main road system. we do not allow bicycles and on through roads or near through roads. we don't even make a separate bike tracks. we have distributors along access roads. the infrastructure not only needs to be safe, but coherent, direct, and comfortable to attract and bicycles. it can be safe, but if it is not comfortable or direct, they will not use it. they have in mind that they can take care of their own safety. that is not always the case. what do i mean by coherence? consistency of route, it is part
of the mobility change and access to the railway station, taking the train to what ever destination city, continue on the other side. directness, we mean it detours faster with a constant speed. there is nothing slowing down or speeding up again. and with a minimum of delays. what makes a bike route attractive, it is a psychological element. it is different for every person. we know that people like to cycle along the waterways or railways. but not along the motorways.
and they like a scenic route more than an infrastructure area. it needs to be wide enough to cycle a side-by-side. it is a social events. what we say in the netherlands, car drivers are all the time aware of cyclists. and when there are too many trucks, a high traffic volume, then we should worry. it is for you to decide what you want, if you want to introduce a cycling, maybe it is better to start with separation and to get the cars used to of the cyclists. they can go in the streets and let them deal with us.
avoid hard conflicts, make a safe infrastructure, but take care that the vehicles are safe with l breaks, and make sure that the cyclist's keep the traffic rules, they don't ignore red lights, they got used sidewalks, and etc.. the surface, as i explained, a smooth surface, issuing great findings, priorities, and the gentle slopes are a bit difficult here. that is why it is growing in popularity. [unintelligible] the people that are doing the
workshop can see it again. we work with a great structure in urban areas to connect all of the destinations. i will advise you to do something here and there. back to them. keep in mind were the cyclist comes from and where they want to go to. look for connections. and make shortcuts for cyclists. it was very handy. and you don't have to wait for the traffic lights. working on the system of bicycle highways, you have priorities for the rural area between urban areas. it moves wide and you can cycle
as fast. a bicycle can go very fast. in needs to be social safe as well. that is sometimes difficult. for the bicycle street, some of you might have seen in as part of the cycle route. the cargo in the streets with two types. you can see them on the pictures, the car in the middle had the the car on the side. they work pretty well. they are introduced more and more all over the country. when we separate bicycles from cars, we prefer parking on the left side.
you don't have the chance of enduring so much. for intersections, i have seen the traffic circle here and they start shouting, round about. the others say, it is just the wine. maybe you could introduce more, because the roundabouts are a very good facility for bicycles. it increases the capacity for crossing. it is so much safer than a traditional crossing. we have four types of bikes. you need space for yielding cars that are leaving the circle,
they have a separate path. traffic lights, they have a face for cyclists the they can make a left-hand turn without going straight and then turning left. it is safe, but the discretion at the traffic light, i saw some here in san francisco. sometimes we make a right turn to go left. it is beneficial that you go on to the right. and across the street.
we have traffic lights, and it saves a lot of lives. these are technical things, but what i can say, they prefer tunnels over bridges. as you live in this area, you know is easier to go down and with the speed you get, to go up the hill again. then to go down and break at the bottom of the hill. down first, up with the energy, that is better. they can be socially and save. the parking here, do not forget.
they want to go to some destination, to take care that people can park their bicycles there. safe and well fitted space, one thing as a whole. and also important, is maintaining the opening. does that get the bike lanes, where the bicycles can keep the surface smooth. i saw small street sweepers here. it is very good, and if there is a road block, don't make a detour for more than 3 miles. there is a law to protect cyclists.
the car driver who is always the guilty party. if you can prove that he did his best not to hit the bicycle, he can get away with a 50% killed. but he is always partly guilty because he should be aware that he is using a vehicle that can kill others and he should be aware that cyclists are not the best road users there are. i think that is a very good rule in the netherlands. i think cyclists should also be aware of how vulnerable they are, and they should take care of the rules that apply to them.
it is not a pedestrian on wheels, they do not allow on the sidewalks, facilities need to be tailor-made. i don't copy all of the things that are in the book. keep in mind that you want to plan for san francisco, and that san franciscans have to deal with it. but look to it for inspiration. inhibit is not just a sport, it is a mode of transport. the bicycle is not the poor man's mercedes. i want to end my presentation with this picture that i love to show. it is our former queen, her present queen, and future queen on bicycles. [applause]
>> thank you so much for the inspiration, words of wisdom, and the help that you will share the next few days. i am the executive director of the san francisco bicycle coalition. we're thrilled to be cosponsoring this event. for your support, enthusiasm, commitment, bringing fantastic talents. we will work hard in the next few days. huge thanks to the political family at the support. this would be an exercise in vision and dreaming.
if it weren't for the fact that myself and so many others have the faith that we will actually produce results in the next few days, this will not just be draining envisioning. we will take many, maybe all of your ideas and to move forward. because we have such tremendous political support. i want to recognize and the mayor in the last 67 months of working with him, i can't tell you the difference. we're thrilled to have such a partner. i want to thank you for the support and enthusiasm. i want to thank you from the police department, the port, and we really have the commitment we needed to move forward. that is why i am very optimistic. i want to say thank you to the teams that put this together. big thanks for jennifer with the dutch consulate.
i was fortunate to spend eight months in the netherlands, and we got to test ride the thing that many of you have been working on for some many years. we have this idea, a belief that san francisco can be a great bicycling city, internationally recognized. sometimes that vision gets challenged and that belief and waver a bit, i will be honest wit. my time in amsterdam, i could test that vision. is if all i make it out to be when i talk to folks.
what i saw and what i experienced let me feeling without a doubt that you have succeeded in a way that is amazingly admirable, and in a way that we should be striving for here in san francisco. and most importantly, that i know we can reach. that was my biggest take away. there is a wonderful presentation of all of the elements, many of the elements they are using to make the netherlands said world-renowned bicycling environment. i saw that san francisco has some many of these elements already in place. we are so far down the line, what we need is to bring it together. what i saw were similarities, and it was impressive to learn the meeting with dutch planners and local city officials that amsterdam and san francisco -- i
will focus on amsterdam because that is where i spent most of my time, but these cities are very similar. similar populations, similar population densities. they are laid out very similar in terms of residential density. we're centers for strong regional economies, similar in economic drivers. tourism is number one. viking is part of their tourism. also big finance, creative technology, that as part of the economic driver. also big similarities in terms of cultural or political persuasions. we are a population that values environmental sustainability. it values and social equity. we are cities that understand the benefit of the greater good